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Worriers - Imaginary Life (Album Review)

Monday, 10 August 2015 Written by Laura Johnson

Though ‘Imaginary Life’ is Worriers’ first album, following up the not-quite-feature-length ‘Cruel Optimist’, it bears the hallmarks of an experienced hand. Helmed by punk veteran Lauren Denitzio, who brings to the table a decade’s worth of experience with this band and The Measure [SA], the record is the encapsulation of a songwriting style thousands of shows in the making.

It’s hook laden, and relentless with it. Parts will rattle around your brain for weeks, while Glutton For Distance continues the pace and paints a vivid picture of tour life and the debris it can leave in its wake: “I was a glutton for distance. You gave me roots through the hardest times.”

The album crosses the finish line with 28 minutes on the clock, but covers so much ground that it feels expansive. It’s deeply impressive. There isn’t a moment of filler and barely a word wasted. If it’s said, it’s supposed to have an impact.

Plans is a brilliant summation of a dysfunctional relationship and the difficulty that attends prioritising your own needs, something that’s explored further on the album’s closer, Chasing, a candid take on craving attention: “Push me up against the door. Make believe you’re kissing someone you make time for.”

Unwritten, which previously appeared on the Measure’s 2010 album ‘Notes’, is an example of Denitzio’s considered syntax and the through line of her songwriting: “If it’s between you and any other adjective, just so you know, for me there’s no contest.”

Yes All Cops hits a serious note, with Denitzio discussing her distrust of police and the power of inaction: “Sometimes silence is a loaded gun in the hands of all of us. Nothing hurts like doing nothing can.”  They/Them/Theirs finds Denitzio expressing exasperation with gender specific pronouns. The chorus is one that, much like Parts, will resonate for days.

‘Imaginary Life’, with its poignant lyrics and accomplished melodies, is a contender for record of the year. Worriers have carved their own path to follow.

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